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House of Commons Hansard #56 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was million.

Topics

The BudgetStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Dave Batters Conservative Palliser, SK

Mr. Speaker, our Conservative government's budget delivers for all Canadians.

Our tax-free savings account will allow Canadians to save $5,000 a year for their own priorities. The money will help SIAST students buy their first car, help a Regina couple afford the wedding they are planning, help a family in Caronport with home renovations, or help a senior in Moose Jaw save more for retirement or a trip to see the grandkids. The best part is that this money will grow outside the grip of the taxman.

With this budget, our government continues its significant investment in Saskatchewan. We are investing $240 million in a carbon sequestration project and $10 million in the synchrotron. We are making gas tax funding permanent for municipalities and funding police officer recruitment for our communities. We are investing in our farmers and livestock producers, our students and our seniors.

With this budget, our Conservative government is building a better future for the people of Saskatchewan and for all Canadians.

Outaouais Book FairStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Richard Nadeau Bloc Gatineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is with great pride that I invite everyone to attend the 29th Salon du livre de l'Outaouais, which is being held this year in Gatineau from February 28 to March 2. This year's theme is escapism.

A number of distinguished guests will be in attendance. Quebec novelist Stanley Péan will preside over this year's event. He will be joined by several special guests, including two prominent Outaouais personalities, the poet Claire Boulé and novelist Georges Lafontaine. Carole Tremblay, author of children's literature, and Stéphane Dompierre, author of popular literature, will be present. Anne Robillard, well known author of The Knights of Emerald and a master in the art of helping readers escape to another place, will also be at the fair, as will many other distinguished guests.

On behalf of my Bloc Québécois colleagues, I would like to invite everyone to attend the 29th Salon du livre de l'Outaouais.

The BudgetStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Steven Blaney Conservative Lévis—Bellechasse, QC

Mr. Speaker, as Bloc members prepare to vote against the interests of Quebec and Canada, here are five good reasons to reconsider their position and to support our Conservative budget.

First, we have said yes to an independent body to manage the employment insurance fund.

We have $90 million for the targeted initiative for older workers.

For the manufacturing sector, there is $1 billion in additional relief for the purchase of machinery and $440 million for innovation.

For our pork and beef producers, there is $50 million in assistance and $3.3 million in advance payments.

And finally, for public transit, there is $500 million and the carbon exchange gets $66 million.

Why is the Bloc against this budget? As they themselves said, they cannot allow themselves to vote a third time for the Conservative budget because people will wonder what they are doing in Ottawa.

Never mind, that is already the case.

Labour Market AgreementStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Paul Zed Liberal Saint John, NB

Mr. Speaker, tomorrow, Saint John will be hosting the signing of an agreement between the Province of New Brunswick and the Government of Canada. The labour market agreement will be investing over $68 million of taxpayer money for New Brunswickers. This new money will provide training opportunities for our workers, the disabled and our aboriginal peoples to reach their full potential.

These essential funds will also help Saint John, Rothesay, Quispamsis and all of New Brunswick invest in their highly motivated workforce to meet the challenges of our new and growing energy economy. Renewing the Liberal initiative, first introduced by the Chrétien government in 1996, will bring new opportunities for training to those who need it most.

As with the gas tax, a Liberal program, the forestry sector, the manufacturing sector, public investment in public transit and investing in our students and workers, the only time the government gets it right is when it looks across the aisle. Imitation is the highest form of flattery.

The BudgetStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

David Anderson Conservative Cypress Hills—Grasslands, SK

Mr. Speaker, it is my honour to stand before the House after Canada's Conservative government tabled a balanced, focused and prudent budget earlier this week.

The budget is good news for Saskatchewan. With programs like agri-stability, agri-invest, agri-insurance and agri-recovery, as well as the advance payments program, we are giving our farmers a chance to succeed.

Livestock and pork producers have been under pressure lately and have asked for help. One of their requests was that no government program would damage their trade opportunities. We have stepped forward. Our finance and agriculture ministers have once again put farmers first.

That is why our budget commits an additional $72 million on programs for our producers. We are spending $50 million on a sow cull program that will help bring stability to the marketplace. We have committed additional resources to ensure better access to the advance payment plan.

Rural Saskatchewan will certainly benefit from the $240 million for carbon capture and storage, the clean energy project.

The budget builds a stronger Saskatchewan.

The BudgetStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

David Christopherson NDP Hamilton Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, the federal budget was a huge insult to many people in my riding of Hamilton Centre. We needed support for our struggling steel industry, assistance to increase the number of family doctors and to shorten wait times, help for seniors, the disabled, new Canadians and others who are too often left behind.

However, as The Hamilton Spectator pointed out:

... there was no help available for urban centres where local taxpayers are burdened with mounting costs for infrastructure repairs, replacement and overdue maintenance

John Dolbec, CEO of the Hamilton Chamber of Commerce, was even more scathing when he said:

...we feel there is at this point a crisis in the manufacturing sector, and I don't think there is an acknowledgement of the depth and breadth of that crisis in this budget.

For a government with record surpluses and that has just spent $10 billion on debt repayment and $14 billion on corporate tax cuts, this budget is a slap in the face to hard-working Hamiltonians who deserve more support and assistance from their own government.

I say shame on the Conservative government and shame on the Liberals for supporting the government.

Rare DiseasesStatements By Members

February 28th, 2008 / 2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Don Bell Liberal North Vancouver, BC

Mr. Speaker, tomorrow, February 29, is the first International Rare Disease Day and today is CORD's, the Canadian Organization for Rare Diseases, Day of Action on the Hill.

Rare disorders include such conditions as cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy, thalassemia, MPS, pulmonary hypertension, Fabry disease and kidney cancer.

Canada is one of the only developed countries in the world that does not have a definition of a rare disorder or an orphan drug policy. A Canadian rare disorder policy is urgently needed as accessing medications to treat rare disorders is extremely difficult and there are currently significant systemic barriers for patients and families.

Members of CORD, family members and friends are in Ottawa today to ask Parliament to accept CORD's “Chance for Life” fund and other proposals.

Over 7,000 rare disorders have been identified so far and affect approximately 10% of Canadians.

I have submitted private member's Motion No. 426 to support CORD and Canadians with rare disorders and I ask my colleagues to support it.

The BudgetStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Carole Lavallée Bloc Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Conservative government's budget reflects the Conservatives' values: more money for the military, nuclear energy and oil companies and next to nothing for humanitarian aid.

The Conservative member for Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean has said, “In Ottawa, you represent your riding, but also the entire country...Measures must be adopted with a view to benefiting Canada as a whole”.

That is why the Conservative members from Quebec did not do anything for Quebec in this budget. A federalist member elected by Quebeckers cannot do anything in Ottawa. He is powerless in the face of his party's interests, which come before those of Quebec.

Why did the 11 Conservative members from Quebec do nothing for workers in this budget?

The BudgetStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Some hon. members

Because they are powerless.

The BudgetStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Carole Lavallée Bloc Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, QC

Why did they do nothing for seniors?

The BudgetStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Some hon. members

Powerless.

The BudgetStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Carole Lavallée Bloc Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, QC

Why did they do nothing for women?

The BudgetStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Some hon. members

Powerless.

The BudgetStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Carole Lavallée Bloc Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, QC

Why did they do nothing for the nation of Quebec?

The BudgetStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Some hon. members

Powerless.

The BudgetStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Carole Lavallée Bloc Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, QC

Only the Bloc Québécois defends the interests of the nation of Quebec and successfully promotes Quebeckers' values.

Aboriginal AffairsStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Lloyd St. Amand Liberal Brant, ON

Mr. Speaker, today marks the second anniversary of a situation that has become known as Caledonia. It is a land claim dispute that needs to be resolved as soon as possible. It is affecting homeowners, businesses and is most certainly eroding what had been a harmonious relationship between residents of Six Nations of the Grand River and residents of nearby communities, not just Caledonia.

My riding of Brant has been affected. There have been occupations on sites currently under development in the city of Brantford.

All are frustrated at the slow pace of negotiations. All are disturbed at the lack of reporting from the table. Is progress being made? We do not know.

I am calling on the federal government to do more to accelerate and intensify efforts to achieve a settlement sooner rather than later. Both sides deserve nothing less.

Tackling Violent Crime ActStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Ed Fast Conservative Abbotsford, BC

Mr. Speaker, today is a great day for Canadians. Yesterday the Senate finally passed our tackling violent crime act. After delays and stonewalling by Liberal senators, the will of Canadians has triumphed.

Our Conservative government has delivered a tough on crime package that every Canadian can cheer about. The new law changes the way dangerous offenders are sentenced. It forces gun criminals to serve real time in prison. For repeat violent offenders, revolving door justice is over. Those who sexually exploit our children will pay a heavy price.

This law is about respecting victims, protecting our children and holding dangerous criminals accountable for their crimes.

What is more, we have just announced funding for 2,500 more police officers and for significant improvements to our prison system.

I want Canadians to know that our government will not stop fighting to make Canada safer. I know the Liberals and the NDP are not happy, but today Canadians across the country are saying bravo.

EthicsOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion LiberalLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, Chuck Cadman was a man of great integrity but now we learn that the Conservative Party tried to bribe him and that the Prime Minister was aware of it. Mr. Cadman could not be bought.

Standing Order 23(1) states:

The offer of any money or other advantage to any Member of this House, for the promoting of any matter whatsoever depending or to be transacted in Parliament, is a high crime and misdemeanour, and tends to the subversion of the Constitution.

What was the Prime Minister thinking?

EthicsOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, as I said earlier, this story was raised with me two and a half years ago. I looked into it. There is absolutely no truth in it.

The officials who were at the meeting have been very clear about what transpired. Chuck Cadman himself, on national television on the day of that historic vote, also indicated that the story is not true, and I wish everybody would accept his word.

EthicsOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion LiberalLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker—

EthicsOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

EthicsOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order, please. The hon. Leader of the Opposition.

EthicsOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Liberal Saint-Laurent—Cartierville, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister knew that his emissaries, his agents, people acting under his orders, tried to buy off a dying man. He knew it. It was immoral, unethical and illegal. It was against section 119 of the Criminal Code.

Why did the Prime Minister authorize such immoral and illegal wheelings and dealings? Why did he let that happen?

EthicsOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, these allegations are false and irresponsible.

I can understand that the leader of the Liberal Party is not going to accept my word for it. I can understand that he is not going to accept what Conservative officials said. I can understand that he is not going to accept the fact there is no evidence, but on national television Chuck Cadman said he discussed nomination meetings with Conservative officials. He said, “That was the only offer on anything that I had from anybody”.

We have a deceased colleague who was highly respected here, so the question is, why will the leader of the Liberal Party not accept his word?